Fusion Advance Demonstrates Value of Long-Haul Energy Research

A paper published in Nature this week resoundingly demonstrates the value of keeping it up, describing an important, if still incremental, advance. The paper, “Fuel gain exceeding unity in an inertially confined fusion implosion,” is deconstructed by Ken Chang and Bill Broad in a nice, if quirkily titled, article in The Times: “Giant Laser Complex Makes Fusion Advance, Finally.”

Nuclear has its issues (e.g., catastrophes), but the dread-to-risk ratio is wildly high, thanks in no small part to an incredible amount of misinformation. The future of energy consumption is unknown, because the issues are so complex. I'd love to see safe, clean renewables eat everything's lunch, but that's not likely to happen (though, again, let's try), so we should be exploring every alternative to finite, relatively highly pollutive, relatively highly dangerous fossil fuels.